NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches' Association (USTFCCCA) recently announced the 2017 DII Cross Country All-Academic Awards, with Anderson University's Ben Clark, Weston Hutto, Cameron Owens-Hunter, Hannah Beach, Abigail Bozarth, Haylee Love and Allyson Malone being named to the teams.
Clark, a freshman from York, S.C., carries a 3.43 GPA and is majoring in arts history/ secondary social studies education. Hutto (3.60 GPA) and Owens-Hunter (3.25 GPA) are freshmen majoring in business, while Beach (4.0 GPA) is a freshman biology major. Bozarth is a junior kinesiology major with a 4.0 GPA and Love, a senior art/graphic design major, owns a 3.74 GPA. Malone, a native of Athens, Ohio, is an elementary education major who carries a 4.0 GPA.
A total of 675 athletes – 393 women and 282 men – earned individual All-Academic honors, with 89 posting a perfect 4.0 grade point average.
The individual All-Academic honor was awarded to those athletes who have compiled a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.25 and finished among the top 30 percent of eligible runners at his or her regional championships and/or the top half of the field at the NCAA Championships.
Both the Trojan men's (3.42 GPA) and women's (3.51 GPA) cross country squads were among 157 women's teams and 119 men's teams that earned All-Academic Team honors for the 2017 season. Programs must have compiled a cumulative GPA or 3.00 or greater and scored at an NCAA Division II regional meet to qualify for the award.
Union (Tenn.) paced the women's side with the highest team grade point average of 3.92. Alderson Broaddus and Azusa Pacific tied for the best men's grade point average, as each program posted a 3.77 in the classroom.
The women's cross country team has claimed the Dr. Shirley Jacks Award, which is given by the AU Athletic Department to the team that possesses the highest grade point average at the end of each semester, for two of the last three semesters and also paced the department in both semesters of the 2008-09 academic year and for six semesters out of seven academic terms from 2008-2011.
Joining the Black and Gold on the men's side from the South Atlantic Conference were Catawba, Coker, Lenoir-Rhyne, Lincoln Memorial, Tusculum and Wingate. On the women's side, Carson-Newman, Catawba, Lenoir-Rhyne, Lincoln Memorial, Mars Hill, Queens and Wingate also joined the AU women's squad.